CONTINUED FROM PART 1:
Despite the controversy surrounding the Jonathan Living Seagull film, the soundtrack was a success…..while peaking at # 2 on the Billboard albums chart…..then Diamond also won a Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score…..and a Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack Album for a Motion Picture…..as a result was that he often included a Jonathan Livingston Seagull suite in his live performances…..which he also did in his 1976 Love at the Greek concert…..and for his show in Las Vegas that same year.
Music – 1976 – Live Concert at the Greek Theatre – Neil Diamond – “Love at the Greek” ((Entire Concert)
Diamond returned to live shows in 1976 with an Australian tour, “The ‘Thank You Australia’ Concert”…..which was broadcast to 36 television outlets nationwide. He also again appeared at the Greek Theater in a 1976 concert, Love at the Greek…..with an album and accompanying video/DVD of the show includes a version of “Song Sung Blue” with duets with Helen Reddy and Henry Winkler, a.k.a. Arthur “The Fonz” Fonzarelli of Happy Days.
Music – 1976 – “The ‘Thank You Australia’ Concert” (Entire Concert) – Neil Diamond Kicks Off Australian Tour
He began wearing colorful beaded shirts in concert, originally so that everyone in the audience could see him without binoculars…..as Bill Whitten designed and made the shirts for Diamond from the 1970’s until approximately 2007.
Music & Talk Shows – 2001 – The Tonight Show With Jay Leno – Featuring Guest Neil Diamond
Music & Talk Shows – 1993 – The Phil Donahue Show Live – Featuring Guest Neil Diamond
Music & Talk Shows – 1971 – Interview for Canadian TV With Host/Author Pierre Berton – Featuring Guest Neil Diamond
In 1974, Diamond released the album Serenade, from which “Longfellow Serenade” and “I’ve Been This Way Before” were issued as singles…..as the latter had been intended for the Jonathan Livingston Seagull score…..but Diamond had completed it too late for inclusion. That same year he appeared on a TV special for Shirley Bassey and sang a duet with her.
Music – 1974 – From the Album Serenade – Neil Diamond – “The Last Picasso”
Music – 1974 – From the Album Serenade – Neil Diamond – “I’ve Been This Way Before”
Music – 1974 – Live on the Shirley Bassey TV Special – Neil Diamond & Shirley Bassey Duet “Play Me” – With Neil Diamond Singing Solo “Sweet Caroline” & “Longfellow Serenade”
Music – 1974 – From the Album Serenade – Neil Diamond – “Yes I Will”
In 1976, he released Beautiful Noise…..which was produced by Robbie Robertson of The Band. On Thanksgiving 1976, Diamond made an appearance at The Band‘s farewell concert, The Last Waltz, performing “Dry Your Eyes”…..which he wrote jointly with Robertson…..and which had appeared on Beautiful Noise. He also joined the rest of the performers onstage at the end in a rendition of Bob Dylan‘s “I Shall Be Released“.
Music – 2008 – From the Album Beautiful Noise – Neil Diamond – “Beautiful Noise’ Live at Madison Square Garden” in NYC
Music – 1976 – From the Movie and Album The Last Waltz – Neil Diamond and The Band Perform “Dry Your Eyes” – Live on Stage
Music – 1976 – From the Movie and Album The Last Waltz – Neil Diamond, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Dr. John, Van Morrison, Neil Young and The Band Perform “I Shall Be Released” – Live on Stage
Diamond was paid $650,000 (about $3.1 million in 2021) by the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada, to open its new $10 million Theater For the Performing Arts on July 2, 1976…..when the show played through July 5….. and drew sold-out crowds at the 7,500-seat theater…..as a “who’s who” of Hollywood attended opening night, ranging from Elizabeth Taylor to Chevy Chase…..and Diamond walked out on stage to a standing ovation. He opened the show with a story about an ex-girlfriend who dumped him before he became successful. His lead-in line to the first song of the evening was, “You may have dumped me a bit too soon, baby, because look who’s standing here tonight.”
Music – 1976 – The Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas Highlights Special – “Neil Diamond Opens The New $10 Million Theater For the Performing Arts at the Aladdin”
He performed at Woburn Abbey on July 2, 1977, to an audience of 55,000 British fans…..as the concert and interviews were taped by film director William Friedkin…..who used six cameras to capture the performance.
Music – 1977 – Live at Woburn Abbey in Bedfordshire, England – Neil Diamond – “You Got To Be Me”
Music – 1977 – Live at Woburn Abbey in Bedfordshire, England – Neil Diamond – “Intro / Dance of the Sabres”
Music – 1977 – Live at Woburn Abbey in Bedfordshire, England – Neil Diamond – “Stargazer”
In 1977, Diamond released I’m Glad You’re Here with Me Tonight, including “You Don’t Bring Me Flowers”…..for which he composed the music….and on the writing of whose lyrics he collaborated with Alan Bergman and Marilyn Bergman…..as Barbra Streisand covered the song on her album Songbird….. and later, a Diamond-Streisand duet was recorded, spurred by the success of radio mash-ups. That version hit # 1 in 1978…..which was his 3rd song to top the Hot 100. They appeared unannounced at the 1980 Grammy awards ceremony…..where they performed the song to a surprised and rapturous audience.
Music – 1977 – From the Album I’m Glad You’re Here With Me Tonight – Neil Diamond – “I’m Glad You’re Here With Me Tonight”
Music – 1977 – From the Album I’m Glad You’re Here With Me Tonight – Neil Diamond – “Desiree”
Music – 1977 – From the Album I’m Glad You’re Here With Me Tonight – Neil Diamond & Barbara Streisand Duet – “You Don’t Bring Me Flowers” – Performed Live at the 1980 Grammy Awards
Music – 1977 – From the Album I’m Glad You’re Here With Me Tonight – Neil Diamond – “Let Me Take You In My Arms Again”
In 1977 Neil Diamond was quoted as saying “I have a love-hate relationship with songwriting. I love it because it’s so satisfying…when it works. I hate it because it forces you to dig inside yourself. It is without question the most difficult thing I do.”
Music – 1978 – From the Album Remember Me – Neil Diamond – “Remember Me”
Music – Video – 1988 – From the Album This Time – Neil Diamond – “This Time”
Music – Video – 1971 – Neil Diamond – “I Think It’s Going To Rain Today”
His last 1970’s album was September Morn…..which included a new version of “I’m a Believer”…..as it and “Red Red Wine“ are his best-known original songs made more famous by other artists. In February 1979, the up-tempo “Forever in Blue Jeans”, co-written and jointly composed with his guitarist, Richard Bennett, was released as a single from You Don’t Bring Me Flowers, Diamond’s album from the previous year.
Music – 1979 – From the Album September Morn – Neil Diamond – “September Morn” – Performed Live on Stage in 2010 in this Video
Music – 1979 – From the Album September Morn – Neil Diamond – “I’m A Believer”
Music – 1977 – Bang Records Presents – Neil Diamond – “Red Red Wine” – Performed Live at the Greek Theatre in 2012 at Hot August Night III
Music – 1977 – Live on the Neil Diamond Television Show – Neil Diamond Sings A Medley of 6 Songs He Has Written
Music – 1979 – From the Album September Morn – Neil Diamond – “The Good Lord Loves You”
In 1979, Diamond collapsed on stage in San Francisco and was taken to the hospital…..where he endured a 12-hour operation to remove what turned out to be a tumor on his spine. He said he had been losing feeling in his right leg “for a number of years but ignored it”. When he collapsed, he had no strength in either leg. He underwent a long rehabilitation process just before starting principal photography on his film The Jazz Singer in 1980….. as he was so convinced he was going to die that he wrote farewell letters to his friends. If you ever needed proof that some people did exactly what God intended them to do….then watch the video below…..where Neil Diamond was 80 yrs. old…..and he could still sing.
Music – December 4, 2022 – Opening Night At The Broadhurst Theatre on Broadway – Musical “Beautiful Noise” – As Neil Diamond Makes Surprise Appearance and Sing “Sweet Caroline”
A planned film version of “You Don’t Bring Me Flowers” to star Diamond and Streisand fell through when Diamond instead starred in a 1980 remake of the Al Jolson classic The Jazz Singer alongside Laurence Olivier and Lucie Arnaz. Though the movie received poor reviews, the soundtrack spawned three top-10 singles, “Love on the Rocks”, “Hello Again” and “America“….. with the last having had emotional significance for Diamond….saying, “‘America’ was the story of my grandparents,” he told an interviewer. “It’s my gift to them, and it’s very real for me … In a way, it speaks to the immigrant in all of us.” The song was performed in full by Diamond during the film’s finale…..with an abbreviated version being played over the film’s opening titles. The song was also the one he was most proud of….which is partly because of when it was later used…..as national news shows played it when the hostages were shown returning home after the Iran hostage crisis ended…..and it was played on the air during the 100th anniversary of the Statue of Liberty…..plus at a tribute to slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr……as well as the Vietnam Vets Welcome Home concert…..when he was asked to perform it live. At the time, a national poll found the song to be the # 1 most recognized song about America, more than “God Bless America”. It also became the anthem of his world tour two weeks after the attacks on America on September 11, 2001…..when he changed the lyric at the end from “They’re coming to America” to “Stand up for America!” Earlier that year he performed it after a request from former heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali.
Music – Video – 1978 – From the Album The Jazz Singer – Neil Diamond – “Love On The Rocks”
Music – Video – 1978 – From the Album The Jazz Singer – Neil Diamond – “Hello Again”
Music – Video – 1978 – From the Album The Jazz Singer – Neil Diamond – “America” – Sung Live at the Greek Theatre in 2012
Another Top 10 selection, “Heartlight”, was inspired by the blockbuster 1982 movie E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial…..albeit the film’s title character is never mentioned in the lyrics, Universal Pictures…..which had released E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial…..and was the parent company of the Uni Records label (by then called MCA Records)…..for which Diamond had recorded for years, briefly threatened legal action against both Diamond and Columbia Records.
Music – 1982 – From the Album Heartlight – Neil Diamond Performs “Heartlight” on His Classic Diamonds Album
Diamond’s record sales slumped somewhat in the 1980’s and 1990’s…..with his last single to make the Billboard Pop Singles chart coming in 1986…..but his concert tours continued to be big draws…..as Billboard magazine ranked Diamond as the most profitable solo performer of 1986. …..when he released his 17th studio album in 1986, Headed for the Future…..which reached # 20 on the Billboard 200. Three weeks later he starred in Hello Again…..which was his 1st television special in nine years…..while performing comedy sketches and a duo medley with Carol Burnett.
Music – 1986 – From the Album Headed for the Future – Neil Diamond – “The Story of My Life”
Music & Comedy – 1986 – TV Special “Hello Again” – With Neil Diamond & Carol Burnett Performing Comedy Skits & Singing A Medley of Songs
In January 1987, Diamond sang the national anthem at the Super Bowl. His “America” became the theme song for the Michael Dukakis 1988 presidential campaign. That same year, British band UB40‘s reggae interpretation of Diamond’s ballad “Red Red Wine“ topped the Billboard Pop Singles chart and, like the Monkees’ version of “I’m a Believer“…..which became better known than Diamond’s original version.
Music & NFL – 1987 – Super Bowl XXI – National Anthem of the United States of America” – Sung By Neil Diamond
During the 1990’s, Diamond produced six studio albums…..where he covered many classic songs from the movies and from famous Brill Building-era songwriters. He also released two Christmas albums, the 1st of which peaked at # 8 on Billboard’s Album chart…..plus he recorded two albums of mostly new material during this period. In 1992, he performed for President George H. W. Bush’s final Christmas in Washington NBC special. In 1993, Diamond opened the Mark of the Quad Cities (now the iWireless Center) with two shows on May 27 and 28 to a crowd of 27,000-plus…..as during this decade, Diamond saw a resurgence in his popularity…..as “Sweet Caroline“ became a popular sing-along at sporting events….and it was used at Boston College football and basketball games…..while college sporting events in other states also played it….and it was even played at sports events in other countries, such as a Hong Kong Sevens rugby tournament or a soccer match in Northern Ireland…..plus, it is played at every home game of the Sydney Swans of the Australian Football League…..and became the theme song of Red Sox Nation, the fans of the Boston Red Sox. The New York Rangers also adapted it as their own…..and played it whenever they were winning at the end of the third period of their games…..while the Pittsburgh Panthers football team also played it after the 3rd quarter of all home games…..with the crowd cheering, “Let’s go Pitt”…..not to mention that the Carolina Panthers played it at the end of every home game they won…..and the Davidson College pep band likewise played it in the 2nd half of every Davidson Wildcats men’s basketball home game.
Music – 1992 – Television Special – “Christmas In Washington” – With Neil Diamond + Julie Andrews + President George H. Bush Singing “Morning Has Broken, O Holy Night and Hark The Herald Angels Sing”
Music – 1992 – From the Album A Neil Diamond Christmas – Neil Diamond Sings “Happy Christmas (War is Over)
Music – 2009 – Television Special – “Christmas In Washington” – Neil Diamond Medley – “Joy To The World” + “Walking in a Winter Wonderland” + “A Merry Merry Cherry Cherry Christmas”
Music – 1992 – From the Album Neil Diamond The Christmas Album – Neil Diamond – “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel + We Three Kings of Orient Are ”
Music – 1992 – From the Album Neil Diamond The Christmas Album – Neil Diamond – “Silent Night”
Music – 1992 – From the Album Neil Diamond The Christmas Album – Neil Diamond – “Performed on Neil Diamond The Christmas Show ‘Santa Claus Is Coming To Town”
Music – 1992 – From the Album Neil Diamond The Christmas Album – Neil Diamond – “Little Drummer Boy”– Performed on Neil Diamond The Christmas Show
Music – 1992 – From the Album Neil Diamond The Christmas Album – Neil Diamond – “O Holy Night”
A more severely stripped-down-to-basics album, 12 Songs, produced by Rick Rubin, was released on November 8, 2005, in two editions…..with a standard 12-song release…..and a special edition with two bonus tracks…..which included one featuring backing vocals by Brian Wilson…..as the album debuted at # 4 on the Billboard chart…..and received generally positive reviews…..as Earliwine describes the album as “inarguably Neil Diamond’s best set of songs in a long, long time.” 12 Songs also became noteworthy as one of the last albums to be pressed and released by Sony BMG with the Extended Copy Protection software embedded in the disc.
Music – 2005 – From the Album 12 Songs – Neil Diamond – “Oh Mary”
Music – 2005 – From the Album 12 Songs – Neil Diamond – “Hell Yeah”
Music – 2005 – From the Album 12 Songs – Neil Diamond – “Evermore”
Music – 2005 – From the Album 12 Songs – Neil Diamond – “Delirious Love”
Music – 2005 – From the Album 12 Songs – Neil Diamond – “Man of God”
Music – 2005 – From the Album 12 Songs – Neil Diamond – “We”
On March 19, 2008, it was announced on the television show American Idol that Diamond would be a guest mentor to the remaining Idol contestants…..who would sing Diamond songs for the broadcasts of April 29 and 30, 2008. On the April 30 broadcast, Diamond premiered a new song, “Pretty Amazing Grace”, from his then recently released album Home Before Dark…..which was released May 6, 2008……and topped the album charts in New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States. On May 2, 2008, Sirius Satellite Radio started Neil Diamond Radio. On April 8, 2008, Diamond made a surprise announcement in a big-screen broadcast at Fenway Park that he would be appearing there “live in concert” on August 23, 2008, as part of his world tour…..when the announcement marked the 1st official confirmation of any 2008 concert dates in the US…..which came during the traditional eighth-inning singalong of “Sweet Caroline” …..which had by that time become an anthem for Boston fans. On April 28, 2008, Diamond appeared on the roof of the Jimmy Kimmel building to sing “Sweet Caroline” after Kimmel was jokingly arrested for singing the song dressed as a Diamond impersonator.
Music – 2008 – From the Album Home Before Dark – Neil Diamond – “Pretty Amazing Grace” – Acoustically Performed in the Studio
Music – 2008 – From the Album Home Before Dark – Neil Diamond – “If I Don’t See You Again” – Acoustically Performed in the Studio
Music – 2008 – From the Album Home Before Dark – Neil Diamond – “Don’t Go There”
Music – 2008 – From the Album Home Before Dark – Neil Diamond – “No Words” – With Photo Gallery
Music – 2008 – From the Album Home Before Dark – Neil Diamond – “Home Before Dark”
On June 29, 2008, Diamond played to an estimated 108,000 fans at the Glastonbury Festival in Somerset, England on the Concert of a Lifetime Tour…..when technical problems marred the concert. In August, Diamond allowed cameras to record his entire four-night run at New York’s Madison Square Garden…..when he released the resulting DVD in the US in 2009….. which was one year to the day of the 1st concert. Hot August Night/NYC debuted at # 2 on the charts…..when on the same day the DVD was released, CBS aired an edited version, which won the ratings hour with 13 million viewers. The next day, the sales of the DVD surged, prompting Sony to order more copies to meet the high demand.
Music – 2008 – Live at the Glastonbury Festival in Somerset, England – Neil Diamond – “Thank God For The Nighttime”
Music – 2008 – Live at the Glastonbury Festival in Somerset, England – Neil Diamond – “You Got To Me”
Music – 2008 – Live at the Glastonbury Festival in Somerset, England – Neil Diamond – “Forever in Blue Jeans”
Music – 2008 – Live at the Glastonbury Festival in Somerset, England – Neil Diamond – “Sweet Caroline”
On November 2, 2010, Diamond released the album Dreams…..which is a collection of 14 interpretations of his favorite songs by artists from the rock era…..when the album also included a new slow-tempo arrangement of his “I’m a Believer”…..then in December, he performed a track from the album, “Ain’t No Sunshine“ on NBC’s The Sing-Off with Committed and Street Corner Symphony, two a cappella groups featured on the show. The Very Best of Neil Diamond, a compilation CD of Diamond’s 23 studio recordings from the Bang, UNI/MCA, & Columbia catalogs, was released on December 6, 2011, on the Sony Legacy label.
Music – 2010 – From the Album Dreams – Neil Diamond – “Ain’t No Sunshine”
Music – 2010 – From the Album Dreams – Neil Diamond – “Alone Again (Naturally)”
Music – 2010 – From the Album Dreams – Neil Diamond – “Feels Like Home”
Music – 2010 – From the Album Dreams – Neil Diamond – “Midnight Train To Georgia”
Music – 2010 – From the Album Dreams – Neil Diamond – “Let It Be Me”
Music – 2010 – From the Album Dreams – Neil Diamond – “Hallelujah”
The years 2011 and 2012 were marked by several milestones in Diamond’s career…..when on March 14, 2011, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at a ceremony at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City. In December, he received a lifetime achievement award from the Kennedy Center at the 2011 Kennedy Center Honors. On August 10, 2012, Diamond received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In November 2012, he topped the bill at the centenary edition of the Royal Variety Performance in the UK…..which was transmitted on December 3rd…..plus he also appeared in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Music – 2011 – The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony – Neil Diamond: Intro Video & Acceptance Speech
Music & Awards – 2011 – The Kennedy Center Honors Special – Singer / Songwriter Neil Diamond
On April 20, 2013, Diamond made an unannounced appearance at Fenway Park to sing “Sweet Caroline” during the 8th inning…..which was the 1st game at Fenway since the Boston Marathon bombing. On July 2, he released the single “Freedom Song (They’ll Never Take Us Down)”…..with 100% of the purchase price benefiting One Fund Boston and the Wounded Warrior Project. Sporting a beard, Diamond performed live on the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol as part of A Capitol Fourth…..which was broadcast nationally by PBS on July 4, 2013.
Music – 2013 – Live at Boston Red Sox Fenway Park – Neil Diamond Sings “Sweet Caroline”
Music – 2013 – Live on the Capital Grounds Washington D.C. – Neil Diamond – “The Freedom Song (They’ll Never Take Us Down)”
In January 2014, it was confirmed that Diamond had signed with the Capitol Music Group unit of Universal Music Group…..which also owned Diamond’s Uni/MCA catalog…..as UMG also took over Diamond’s Columbia and Bang catalogues…..which meant that all of his recorded output would be consolidated for the 1st time. On July 8, 2014, Capitol Records announced, via a flyer included with Diamond’s latest greatest hits compilations, All-Time Greatest Hits, which charted at # 15 in the Billboard 200, that his next album, Melody Road….. which was to be produced by Don Was and Jacknife Lee, would be released on September 30, 2014…..but in August, the release date was moved to October 21.
Music – 1977 – From the Album I’m Glad You’re Here With Me Tonight – Neil Diamond – “Once In A While”
Music – 1965 – From the Album September Morn – Neil Diamond – “The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore”
Music – 1988 – From the Album The Best Years Of Our Lives – Neil Diamond – “This Time”
In September 2014, Diamond performed a surprise concert at his alma mater, Erasmus High School in Brooklyn…..as the show was announced via Twitter that afternoon. On the same day, he announced a 2015 “Melody Road” World Tour…..when the North American leg of the World Tour 2015 launched with a concert in Allentown, PA at the PPL Center on February 27tth…..and ended at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado on May 31, 2015. Diamond used new media platforms and social media extensively throughout the tour, streaming several shows live on Periscope and showing tweets from fans who used the hashtag #tweetcaroline on two large screens. The San Diego Union-Tribune wrote: “This, my friends, wasn’t your grandfather’s Neil Diamond concert. It was a multimedia extravaganza. Twitter. Periscope…It was a social media blitzkrieg that, by all accounts, proved to be an innovative way to widen his fan base.”
Music – 2014 – From the Album Live From Erasmus Hall High School: Brooklyn NY – Neil Diamond – “Nothing But A Heartache”
Music – 2014 – From the Album Live From Erasmus Hall High School: Brooklyn NY – Neil Diamond – “You Show What A Little Bit Of Love Can Do”
Music – 2014 – Live in Brooklyn – Neil Diamond – Erasmus Hall Memories & “Brooklyn Roads”
Music – 2014 – From the Album Melody Road – Neil Diamond – “Melody Road”
Music – Video – 2014 – From the Album Melody Road – Neil Diamond – “Something Blue”
Music – Video – 2014 – From the Album Melody Road – Neil Diamond – “Nothing But A Heartache”
Music – Lyric Video – 2014 – From the Album Melody Road – Neil Diamond – “The Art of Love”
Music – Lyric Video – 2014 – From the Album Melody Road – Neil Diamond – “OOO, Do I Want To Be Yours”
In October 2016, Diamond released Acoustic Christmas, a folk-inspired Christmas album of original songs as well as acoustic versions of holiday classics…..which was produced by Was and Lee…..who had produced Melody Road…..as the idea for the album began to take shape as the Melody Road sessions ended. To “channel the intimate atmosphere of ’60’s folk, Diamond recorded Acoustic Christmas with a handful of musicians, sitting around a circle of microphones, wires and, of course, Christmas lights.”
Music – 2016 – From the Album Acoustic Christmas – Neil Diamond – “Christmas Medley With “Santa Claus is Coming To Town’ + “We Wish You A Merry Christmas”‘
Music – 2016 – From the Album Acoustic Christmas – Neil Diamond – “Christmas Prayers”
Music – 1992 – From Neil Diamond – The Christmas Special Show – Neil Diamond – “The Christmas Song”
In March 2017, the career-spanning anthology Neil Diamond 50 – 50th Anniversary Collection was released…..and he began his final concert tour, the 50 Year Anniversary World Tour in Fresno, California, in April.
Music – 2017 – From the Album Neil Diamond’s 50th Anniversary Collection – Neil Diamond – “Street Life”
Music – 2017 – From the Album Neil Diamond’s 50th Anniversary Collection – Neil Diamond – “If You Know What I Mean”
Music – 2017 – From the Album Neil Diamond’s 50th Anniversary Collection – Neil Diamond – “Cruchy Granola Suite”
Music – 2017 – From the Album Neil Diamond’s 50th Anniversary Collection – Neil Diamond – “Glory Road”
In 2019, his 1969 signature song “Sweet Caroline“ was selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Recording Registry for being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”.
Music – 1971 – From the Album Stones – Neil Diamond –“The Last Thing On My Mind”
On March 7, 2020, despite his retirement due to Parkinson’s disease, Diamond gave a rare performance at the Keep Memory Alive Power of Love Gala at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, where he was being honored. On March 22, 2020, Diamond posted a video to YouTube playing “Sweet Caroline” with slightly modified lyrics to “…washing hands, don’t touch me, I won’t touch you…” in response to the widespread social distancing measures implemented due to the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic. Neil Diamond was 80 years old at the time of this video below….. when his God given voice is still evident…..for here was a man who was obviously meant to be a singer / songwriter.
Music – 2020 – Live at Keep Memory Alive Power of Love Gala at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas – Neil Diamond – “Sweet Caroline”
In April 2021, The New York Times reported that A Beautiful Noise, a musical based on Diamond’s life and featuring his songs, would open at the Emerson Colonial Theater in Boston in the summer of 2022. The musical was scheduled to open on Broadway following the month-long run in Boston. Universal Music Group acquired Diamond’s songwriting catalog and the rights to his Bang Records, Columbia Records, and Capitol recordings in February 2022. The acquisition also included 110 unreleased tracks, an unreleased album and archival videos. On June 18, 2022, Diamond sang “Sweet Caroline” during the 8th-inning stretch of a Red Sox game at Fenway Park. In a surprise appearance, he was joined by Will Swenson, who portrays Diamond in the musical A Beautiful Noise.
Music & Interviews – 2003 – 60 Minutes Australia Special – “Tara Brown Interview With Neil Diamond Covering His Brilliant Career and His Love For The Greek Theatre in L A”
In January 2018, Diamond announced that he would stop touring after he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease…..as tour dates on the final leg of Diamond’s “50 Year Anniversary World Tour” in Australia and New Zealand were cancelled. An announcement on his official website said he was not retiring from music and that the cancellation of the live performances would allow him to “continue his writing, recording and development of new projects.”
Music – 2017 – Live at the Forum in Inglewood, CA – Opening for Neil Diamond’s 50th Anniversary Tour – Neil Diamond Singing “In My LIfetime” + “Cherry, Cherry” + “You Got To Me” + Solitary Man”
You Got To Me” + “Solitary Man”
On July 28, 2018, Diamond and his wife Katie McNeil made a surprise visit to the Incident Command post in Basalt, Colorado…..which is near where Diamond lives…..to thank the firefighters and families with a solo acoustic guitar concert for efforts in containing the Lake Christine Fire…..which began on July 3rd and had scorched 12,000 acres (4,900 ha; 49 km2) of land.
Music & News – 2022 – CBS Sunday Morning Anthony Mason Special – “Legends: Neil Diamond and Elton John”
In 2000, Neil Diamond appeared onstage with a Diamond tribute band, Super Diamond, surprising them before their show at House of Blues in Los Angeles. In the 2001 comedy film Saving Silverman, the main characters play in a Diamond cover band….. and Diamond made an extended cameo appearance as himself. Diamond even wrote and composed a new song, “I Believe in Happy Endings”, for the film. He sat in with the tribute band Super Diamond at the film’s premiere party.
Music – 2017 – From the Album Neil Diamond’s 50th Anniversary Collection – Neil Diamond – “I Believe in Happy Endings”
Diamond has been married three times. In 1963, he married his high-school sweetheart, Jaye Posner…..who had become a schoolteacher…..as they had two daughters…..but they separated in 1967 and divorced in 1969. On December 5, 1969, Diamond married production assistant Marcia Murphey…..with whom they had two sons…..while the marriage lasted 25 years, ending in 1995. In 1996, Diamond began a relationship with Australian Rae Farley after the two met in Brisbane, Australia. The songs on Home Before Dark were written and composed during her struggle with chronic back pain. On September 7, 2011, in a message on Twitter, the 70-year-old Diamond announced his engagement to the 41-year-old Katie McNeil. Diamond said that his 2014 album Melody Road was fueled by their relationship, explaining “There’s no better inspiration or motivation for work than being in love. It’s what you dream of as a creative person. I was able to complete this album—start it, write it and complete it—under the spell of love, and I think it shows somehow.” The couple married in front of family and close friends in Los Angeles in 2012. In addition to serving as Diamond’s manager, McNeil produced the documentary Neil Diamond: Hot August Nights NYC.
Music & Lifestyle – 2023 – Photo Gallery Special – “Neil Diamond’s Lifestyle: Wives, Biography, Family, House, Car, Education, Songs, As Child, Partner, Parents and Children et al”
Although I have been a huge Neil Diamond fan since I started high school in 1962…..when it was his music, voice and presentation of his songs that attracted me most…..but after viewing each of the videos presented in this story herewith…..and I began to realize that it was the words of his songs that I have been drawn to more than any other aspect of his music over the years…..for Neil Diamond has been a “word merchant extraordinaire” throughout his entire musical career. It has always been my belief that God has given each and every person born on this Earth their own special talents…..of which had we each had the opportunity to spent our lives developing, enhancing and learning to master our own special talents…..then we each would have found our fulfillment in life just as Neil Diamond has by God putting music in his soul…..and our lives will have provided each of us with everything that we each needed for satisfaction, joyfulness and richness. Albeit Neil Diamond was Jewish and practiced his faith throughout his life…..and the fact remains that he wrote so many songs that channeled God…..while also making three Christmas albums…..in which he sang with so much conviction in his voice about Jesus…..which is evidenced by the undeniable fact that this man was truly doing God’s work by showcasing and sharing his God given musical talent for the past 62 years…..with a voice that is gravel, wrapped in velvet, and covered in honey…..while Neil has always written and sang the most intensely intimate songs…..as his imagination must have had the most incredible muse…..with songs that were beautiful and passionate while being sung by the commensurate vocalist and composer…..who has so much charm wrapped with sensitivity and softness. Neil Diamond is a humble man and performer …..who is also a very decent man (no drugs, no alcohol problems)…..for here is one male music performer who is a fabulous role model. We need more men and women like Neil Diamond. Neil has always been so honest and frank in every interview …..and that’s probably one of the reasons he’s been so successful. For that matter, that’s why I was attracted to him as a singer and songwriter…..cuz he had the balance of masculinity together with vulnerability…..while his unique combination of text and melody makes me think….and brings tears to my eyes again and again. Can we just acknowledge the brilliant writing here….. coupled with the existential crisis put to words…..where pure poetry meets philosophy…..with the perfect paradoxes…..while it’s poetry…..it’s artistic….. the music is universal…..and his voice alone describes his Soul…..with God is in his Heart in the music he wrote. Neil Diamond knew human emotions that we all feel alone…..for God truly blessed us with him.
Music – 2001 – From the Album Three Chord Opera – Neil Diamond – “Leave A Little Room For God”
Music – 2001 – From the Album Three Chord Opera – Neil Diamond – “I Haven’t Played This Song In Years”